Unsung Short Story Masters
September 13, 2013 3:01 PM Subscribe
I want to know about that favorite short story writer of yours that no one else has ever heard of.
posted by Iridic to Writing & Language (42 answers total) 91 users marked this as a favorite
It occurs to be me that a form as dense, prolific, and yet, let's face it, as marginal to modern culture as the short story must have a lot damn fine artists smothered in the dark spirals of its long tail.
So tell me about the luckless grandmasters you love who never made it on to the O. Henry shortlist. Who never made it out of the purgatory of the small collegiate press, or who chose to practice their art on Blogspot, in zines, in fly-by-night urban journals, in the uncollected pulps, at open mics.
Or who won, at least, some little recognition from their more famous peers only to die in a Harlem shooting gallery in 1957, aged 24.
Or who were slightly overrated in 1880, and have been dismally underrated ever since.
Or who are household names in their native lands, but have received only inconsistent and unpublicized English translations.
Or who are honored and loved and discussed in your graduate English seminar, but whom your civilian book-reading friends recognize only with bewildered stares if you mention their name.
Or who never received a fair shake because of their age, their gender, their parents, who they loved, where they were writing from, what they were writing about.
Or who have been quietly turning out masterpieces this last little while, free, happy, and untroubled by anything but the desire for a recognition which simply hasn't yet arrived in force.
Isn't it about time, after all?